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Best Xbox Controllers in 2023

You may need a new Xbox controller if you have an Xbox Series X or S or an Xbox One. Which one should you get? Let’s explore this with this guide to the best controllers available for Microsoft consoles.

You might want to buy a new Xbox controller for many reasons. It could be because you don’t like the handling of the original controller, or it could be because the original controller no longer works. But it could also be because you need additional controllers to play multiple games on your Xbox Series X Series S or Xbox One, One X or One S.

There are plenty of pads available that are compatible with Microsoft’s consoles. Indeed, the Redmond firm already publishes several types of controllers, not to mention licensed third-party manufacturers. In addition, the Xbox controller is also PC-compatible and even smartphone compatible, depending on the model.

What makes a good controller? A pleasant grip, good responsiveness and sensitivity of its buttons, the precision of the joysticks, the quality of the vibrations, its weight, its battery life and the reliability of the link if it is wireless… All this remains, however, very personal and variable according to the players.

So wireless or wired, affordable or premium… We take a look at the best Xbox controllers available on the market.

Microsoft Xbox Elite Series 2

Pros

  • Excellent battery life
  • Perfect ergonomics
  • Easy to configure

Cons

  • Three times as expensive as a regular Xbox controller

If you’re looking for the top-of-the-line, the top-of-the-line, the top-of-the-line, then go for the Xbox Elite Series 2 controller. Our review is clear: this is the best controller for Xbox gaming. With adjustable trigger travel, interchangeable directional cross and sticks with adjustable sensitivity, and removable “pedals”, this controller has it all.

Microsoft-Xbox-Elite-Series-2

The quality of manufacture and the grip are exemplary: nothing has been left to chance between the quality of the materials, the stroke of the buttons, the sensitivity of the joysticks, etc.

Unlike the standard Xbox controller, this Elite Series 2 model has a rechargeable battery by default. Unfortunately, the battery cannot be removed, which is probably its only drawback. The controller can be charged directly via USB-C or via a cradle. The battery life is robust: Microsoft claims up to 40 hours of use before recharging, which was verified in practice during our full test of the Xbox Elite Series 2 controller.

What makes the Elite Series 2 so unique? It’s hyper-precise customisation: it’s modular. It comes with a directional pad and four alternative joysticks. Microsoft also offers to adjust the resistance of the joysticks using a small key provided in the box. By creating different profiles, it is possible to map the keys and the four paddles on the back in detail via the console.

★★★★★

Xbox Elite Series 2 Wireless Controller - Black, Xbox (Nov 4, 2019)

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price £150.99 August 20, 2023
Lowest Price £44.99 February 1, 2024
Since June 16, 2023

Last price changes

£44.99 February 1, 2024
£119.95 January 31, 2024
£137.00 January 3, 2024
£112.00 January 2, 2024
£79.99 December 31, 2023
★★★★★

Xbox Elite Wireless Controller Series 2 – Black, Microsoft (Nov 4, 2019)

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price $199.99 February 7, 2024
Lowest Price $29.00 January 29, 2024
Since June 15, 2023

Last price changes

$150.99 February 8, 2024
$199.99 February 7, 2024
$29.00 January 29, 2024
$111.00 January 10, 2024
$165.99 December 31, 2023

Microsoft Xbox Wireless Controller

Pros

  • A reliable classic
  • Top notch handling
  • Smartphone compatible

Cons

  • None
Microsoft Xbox Wireless Controller​

Why make it complicated when you can make it simple? If you need an Xbox controller, the original wireless controller is an excellent option. It’s comfortable and accurate, and versatile, as you can use it on PC (obviously) but also on Android and iOS smartphones. Its main drawback is that batteries power it. We recommend that you invest in rechargeable batteries. Otherwise, you will spend your time buying new batteries, which is neither ecological nor economical…

★★★★★

Microsoft Xbox Wireless Controller + Wireless Adapter for Windows (Xbox Series X/), Microsoft (Nov 19, 2020)

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price £64.99 June 20, 2023
Lowest Price £43.35 December 3, 2023
Since June 14, 2023

Last price changes

£49.49 February 9, 2024
£54.99 February 8, 2024
£62.10 February 7, 2024
£50.00 January 31, 2024
£63.85 January 3, 2024
★★★★★

Xbox Wireless Controller – Black, Microsoft (Sep 20, 2016)

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price $77.00 December 8, 2023
Lowest Price $35.98 December 7, 2023
Since June 20, 2023

Last price changes

$74.00 March 16, 2024
$57.99 March 5, 2024
$65.64 February 7, 2024
$42.99 February 1, 2024
$57.99 January 31, 2024

PowerA Wired Controller For Xbox Series X|S

Pros

  • Really affordable
  • Colourful design to choose from
  • Headphone jack

Cons

  • None

Now we’re changing our tune with a very cost-effective controller: the wired PowerA for Xbox. PowerA is a well-known player in console accessories, especially controllers, whether for Xbox, Nintendo Switch or PS5. This Xbox-licensed controller has everything to please at an affordable price. The upgraded version has a vibration, a headphone jack, an Xbox share button, and two customisable buttons on the back. It even has a button to mute the microphone.

powera xbox one controller

Given its price point, this is a wired controller, as wires still have many fans. The absence of batteries means that it is much lighter (200g) than the official Xbox Series controller (around 280g with batteries) and the Xbox Elite Series 2 (345g), which are particularly heavy. It has a three-metre-long cable for added convenience and is compatible with Xbox Series X and S and Xbox One.

Its build quality and materials are honourable for the price, although, of course, the buttons are a bit plastic, especially the directional cross. However, there have been reports of joystick drift – a condition that is unfortunately not uncommon in game controllers.

The final advantage is that it comes in several colours that will brighten your console setup.

★★★★★

PowerA Wired Controller For Xbox Series X|S - Black, Gamepad, Wired Video Game Controller, Gaming Controller, Works with Xbox One (Xbox Series X), PowerA (Sep 30, 2021)

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price £29.99 June 20, 2023
Lowest Price £17.99 March 3, 2024
Since June 20, 2023

Last price changes

£22.49 March 16, 2024
£17.99 March 3, 2024
£25.00 February 9, 2024
£24.99 February 8, 2024
£22.49 February 7, 2024
★★★★★

PowerA Wired Controller for Xbox Series X|S - Black, gamepad, video game controller, gaming controller, works with Xbox One and Windows 10/11, PowerA (Sep 5, 2021)

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price $39.88 February 7, 2024
Lowest Price $18.53 October 27, 2023
Since October 27, 2023

Last price changes

$26.87 March 5, 2024
$22.16 March 3, 2024
$26.87 February 9, 2024
$39.88 February 7, 2024
$26.87 January 31, 2024

Razer Wolverine V2 - Wired Gaming Controller

Pros

  • Ideal grip
  • Good customisation
  • Sensitive action buttons

Cons

  • None

Razer has (literally) imposed its colours on the Xbox universe with its Wolverine V2 controller, which comes in a black and green livery. Its biggest flaw is its high price: it’s a wired controller, and it’s not cheap. Of course, the wired connection has advantages: no need to recharge the controller and responsiveness is instantaneous. But we would have liked to have had the choice!

RAZER WOLVERINE V2

The Razer Wolverine V2 has many advantages over the official controller. It is more professional, and Razer has transferred its keyboard skills to this controller. The joysticks are larger and have an anti-slip coating for a better grip. The other significant achievement is the action buttons and the directional cross, which is “mega-tactile”. This reduces the stroke, allowing for better responsiveness. As a result, the click is clean and precise, like a mechanical keyboard. The triggers, on the other hand, are adjustable. It is thus possible to choose the length of the stroke of each of the two triggers independently. If the idea is perfect, we will regret that they are soft and do not (surprisingly) benefit from vibrations.

★★★★★

Razer Wolverine V2 - Wired Gaming Controller for Xbox Series X/S/One & PC (2 Freely Assignable Multifunction Buttons, Action Buttons and D-Pad, Hair Trigger Mode, 3.5 mm Analogue Audio Port) Black

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price £94.99 December 15, 2023
Lowest Price £49.64 August 25, 2023
Since July 8, 2023

Last price changes

£80.25 March 16, 2024
£74.25 February 9, 2024
£82.50 February 8, 2024
£71.99 February 7, 2024
£60.00 February 1, 2024
★★★★★

Razer Wolverine V2 Wired Gaming Controller for Xbox Series X + Universal Grip Tape Bundle, Razer

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price $89.14 July 2, 2023
Lowest Price $56.11 November 22, 2023
Since June 22, 2023

Last price changes

$82.99 February 7, 2024
$79.98 February 1, 2024
$81.44 December 31, 2023
$59.98 December 22, 2023
$79.98 December 4, 2023

Turtle Beach Recon Controller

Pros

  • Non-slip handles
  • Convenient audio control panel

Cons

  • None
Turtle Beach Recon Controller

Like its wired counterparts, the Turtle Beach Recon has a three-metre cable, the most common length. Turtle Beach stands out for the coating on the handles, described as “refreshing”: a non-slip material that prevents sweat. Apart from that, the design and materials could be more attractive, admittedly, with the shiny plastic for the directional cross and action buttons.

The big difference in this controller is above the share button, where there is a control panel. The control panel is mainly concerned with audio settings and will be of interest to those who play team or competitive games. It is possible to manage the ratio between the chat and game volumes or to mute the microphone. Various equalisation modes are also available. One particular equalisation mode (Superhuman Hearing) allows for better perception of certain sounds, such as footsteps, which is very useful in FPS games. On the back, two customisable buttons have been added. The grips and triggers benefit from vibration.

★★★★★

Turtle Beach Recon Controller Black - Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One and PC

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price £382,438.25 February 8, 2024
Lowest Price £34.99 November 18, 2023
Since June 22, 2023

Last price changes

£42.49 March 16, 2024
£38.24 March 5, 2024
£39.16 March 3, 2024
£296,929.69 February 9, 2024
£382,438.25 February 8, 2024
★★★★★

Turtle Beach Recon Controller Wired Gaming Controller for Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One & Windows 10 & 11 PCs - Featuring Remappable Buttons, Audio Enhancements, and Superhuman Hearing - Black, Turtle Beach (Aug 1, 2021)

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Price History

Statistics

Current Price -
Highest Price $59.95 September 15, 2023
Lowest Price $29.26 January 25, 2024
Since September 2, 2023

Last price changes

$50.88 March 14, 2024
$51.91 March 5, 2024
$42.99 March 3, 2024
$44.95 February 7, 2024
$31.95 February 1, 2024
Thank 20

MORE ABOUT XBOX CONTROLLERS

Choosing a controller is very personal because only some have the same hands or tastes. There are several questions you should ask yourself. What is your maximum budget? Are you looking for a simple or a complete controller? Do you want it to be light or heavy in your hands? You will also need to decide whether you prefer a wired or wireless controller. While a Bluetooth controller has the advantage of being free of trailing wires, it will be heavier because of a battery or batteries. You’ll also need to think about recharging it… whereas a wired controller will always be there.
Your choice of the controller will also depend on whether it is your main controller or a small spare controller to lend to a friend for a game of FIFA.
Note that if you used to own an Xbox One and have now invested in an Xbox Series, you can still use your controllers: Xbox One controllers are compatible with Xbox Series X|S and vice versa.

To connect a wired controller, plug it into the console via USB.
You need to pair the controller you want to add manually for wireless controllers. To do this, first, turn on the controller by holding down the Xbox button. Then press the ‘Coupler’ button on the console, which is marked with a (((. This is located near the USB port on the front of the X and S Series. You then have 20 seconds to press the corresponding button on the top of the controller to be connected. You will need to hold it down until the Xbox button starts flashing, meaning that the controller is looking for a console. The button will remain lit once the pairing is successful.
This is the same on the Xbox One X and One S. Note that up to 8 Wireless Controllers can be connected to a single Xbox console.

It depends on the controller. For the Elite Series 2 controller, for example, to configure the buttons, you’ll need to go through the “Accessories” application on your console.
Press the Xbox button to open the guide, select ‘My Games & Apps’, ‘View All’, and ‘Apps’ and then choose ‘Xbox Accessories’. You will then be able to create profiles, usually for each game. You can then map all the buttons on the controller to your preferences and adjust the backlight brightness and vibration (if the controller is compatible).
For third-party products (e.g. PowerA’s), there is no need to go through the console to configure the two customisable buttons on the back. Press the specific programming button for a few seconds, then press the button you wish to assign.

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Richard Garrett

Richard Garrett

As an expert on the latest techy stuff, the primary focus is PCs and laptops. Much of his time is split between smartphones, tablets and audio, focusing on the latest devices.
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